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Salinity Indicator Plants Glossary

Salinity Indicator Plants Home | General Diagrams

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Acute: Sharply pointed.

Acuminate: gradually tapering to a point

Alkaline: Strongly basic substance - pH greater than 7.

Annual: Of one season's duration, from seed to maturity and death.

Anther: Pollen producing part of stamen.

Ascending: Rising up, growing indirectly upwards rather than straight up.

Association: Plants found growing together; vegetation communities.

Axil: Upper angle between a leaf or flower stalk and the stem.

Barb: A short hard hair which is often hooked and usually bent backwards.

Basal: At the base of; growing from the bottom (of the plant).

Biennial: A plant with a life cycle of two seasons' duration.

Brackish water: Salty water which is not as saline as sea water.

Bracts: Leaf-like structures or scales that lie below the flower or flowerhead.

Branchlets: Small branches leading from main branches.

Calyx:Whorl or sepals usually leaf like or joined together (may sometimes be like petals).

Carpel: Part of the ovary in a flower.

Colonizers: Plants that grow quickly and often take over bare ground.

Corolla: All the petals of a flower together.

Cuneate: Wedge-shaped with narrow part attached to leaf stalk.

Cylindrical: Cylinder shaped, tube shaped.

Dioecious: A species having male and female flowers on different plants.

Distichous: Leaves or flowers in two rows either side of the stem.

Elliptic: (Elliptical) Rounded shape, broadest in the middle and narrow at both ends.

Evaporation: To turn from liquid or solid into gas/vapour.

Filament: Supports anther.

Floret: Individual flower in a flowerhead, flower part in grasses.

Flower-head: Flowering part of a plant made up of lots of flowers or florets.

Foliage: Leaves and green parts of plant.

Fruiting body: Fruit, seed-bearing object, e.g. nut, pod, cone.

Glumes: Outer bracts subtending the florets of a grass or sedge

Halophyte: A plant tolerant of various mineral salts in the soil solution, usually as sodium chloride (salt).

Halophytic Communities: Areas of salt tolerant plants with few or no non-tolerant species.

Husk: Dry outer covering of seeds and florets.

Impenetrable: Cannot get through.

Incised: Slashed irregularly; jagged.

Incurled: Curled inwards. Inrolled: Rolled inwards.

Lanceolate: Lance-shaped, much longer than wide, tapering to the tip.

Leach: Wash away.

Lemma: the lower and often larger of two inner bracts enclosing the carpel (female organ) and stamens (male organs) of a grass flower

Lignum: A type of plant which has tangled wiry stems and branches with few leaves.

Linear: Straight and narrow.

Loam: A type of soil made of a mixture of sand, silt and clay.

Lobed: Round divided edge.

Membranes: A thin translucent and delicate tissue.

Monoecious: With separate male and female flowers on the same plant.

Mucro: a sharp, short point

Mucronate: terminating in a sharp, short point

Node: The joint where a leaf or bract arises from the stem.

Obovate: Shaped like a hen's egg with the narrower end attached to the leaf stalk.

Obovoid: A solid form of leaf or structure with an obovate outline.

Obtuse: blunt or rounded.

Ova: The gametes or eggs produced by the female flower.

Ovary: The egg seed producing part of the female flower.

Ovate: Shaped like a hen's egg with the wider end attached to the leaf stalk.

Ovoid: A solid oval or slightly ovate solid shape.

Palatable: Readily eaten by livestock.

Palea: the upper and often smaller of two inner bracts enclosing the carpel (female organ) and stamens (male organs) of a grass flower

Panicle: A much branched flowerhead.

Perennial: Of three or more seasons duration.

Pith: Central column of spongy tissue in stems or spongy tissue is some fruit.

Rhizome: Underground stem or root stock. Has nodes, buds and scale-like leaves (which roots do not have).

Rosetted: A cluster of leaves growing from a central point often lying against the ground.

Salt-pan: A natural undrained shallow depression in which water collects and then evaporates leaving a salt deposit.

Scald: A salty area of land with little or no vegetation caused by a rise in saline water table.

Sepals: Green leaf-like structures around the outside of a flower.

Sessile: Not stalked, sitting.

Sheath: Tubular structure formed by the base of a leaf encircling the stem.

Shrub: Low growing woody plant, producing shoots from the base.

Spathulate: Spoon shaped.

Spicule: A small pointed needle-like part on the stem of some plants.

Spike: Unbranched flowerhead with flowers/florets attached to stem.

Spikelet: Part of a flowerhead, a secondary spike.

Stamen: Male part of a flower. Produces pollen. Made of an anther and filament.

Stigma: The receptive organ of the female flower to which pollen adheres at fertilization.

Stipule: Membranous or leafy out-growths, which occur in pairs at the base of a stalk (and some leaves).

Stolon: Tiller; runner; shoot that bends down to the ground and takes root, or a horizontal stem (on or below the ground) that gives rise to a new plant at its tip.

Striated: With fine longitudinal lines, channels or ridges.

Style: A part of the female flower which joins the stigma to the ovary.

Subulate: Awl-shaped, tapering from base to tip.

Succulent: Fleshy, juicy, thickened.

Sward: An area or expanse of short grass.

Thicket: A number of shrubs, trees, and so on, growing very close together.

Tillers: In grasses shoots growing out sidewards along the ground; a lateral shoot arising at ground level; stolons.

Toothed: Jagged edge, tooth-like.

Tussock: Clump; turf; hillock.

Whorl: A ring of leaves or other structures arising in a circle at the same level.

Wing: Thin dry or membranous extension or appendage.

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